Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Flex 1500 - Great radio for the money  (Read 4851 times)
AF4RK
Member

Posts: 39




Ignore
« on: December 21, 2012, 12:44:31 PM »

First off, for all you "Big Knob Up Front" guys, I am a computer professional. I work as a database administrator for a major bank. If you're not as comfortable using a computer as a ball point pen, find something else to read. SDR is definitely not for you! After 10 months of tweaking a refurbished Dell laptop, Latitude 6500 dual core, I have a contest ready radio that is rated number 13 on the Sherwood Website. And 3 of the top 13 are Flex Radio. I am primarily a CW/RTTY contester, running an Alpha 86.  Yes Virginia, the Flex 1500 does CW, but only with an external keyer/sidetone. the internal keyer is useless. I use N1MM / FLDIGI running an a separate computer with Winkeyer. The secret is this: PowerSDR needs to be the only thing running in Windows, other wise there are strange noises. The Microsoft Mouse and Keyboard driver causes a blast of white noise. Adobe Flash or Adobe anything will trash the radio. leave the buffers alone, people. Otherwise say goodby to selectivity and image rejection. I was running RTTY on the OK DX contest at 100 / hr when my Alpha 86 blew out a Radio Works T 4 isolater, but that's another story. (See my review in eHam for that). I use a QRP linear to get 50 watts to drive the Alpha. Fully filtered, I have no IM problem on PSK (without the Alpha, of course). After contesting with a Yaesu FT100D, I can't imagine using a "normal" radio again. 
Logged
KE5JPP
Member

Posts: 0




Ignore
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2012, 01:48:33 PM »

First off, for all you "Big Knob Up Front" guys, I am a computer professional. I work as a database administrator for a major bank. If you're not as comfortable using a computer as a ball point pen, find something else to read. SDR is definitely not for you! After 10 months of tweaking a refurbished Dell laptop, Latitude 6500 dual core, I have a contest ready radio that is rated number 13 on the Sherwood Website. And 3 of the top 13 are Flex Radio. I am primarily a CW/RTTY contester, running an Alpha 86.  Yes Virginia, the Flex 1500 does CW, but only with an external keyer/sidetone. the internal keyer is useless. I use N1MM / FLDIGI running an a separate computer with Winkeyer. The secret is this: PowerSDR needs to be the only thing running in Windows, other wise there are strange noises. The Microsoft Mouse and Keyboard driver causes a blast of white noise. Adobe Flash or Adobe anything will trash the radio. leave the buffers alone, people. Otherwise say goodby to selectivity and image rejection. I was running RTTY on the OK DX contest at 100 / hr when my Alpha 86 blew out a Radio Works T 4 isolater, but that's another story. (See my review in eHam for that). I use a QRP linear to get 50 watts to drive the Alpha. Fully filtered, I have no IM problem on PSK (without the Alpha, of course). After contesting with a Yaesu FT100D, I can't imagine using a "normal" radio again. 

PowerSDR is a poorly written program and Flex made some really bad choices as far as the SDR interface to the PC.  I have used many other SDR programs and have never experienced the troubles that you have with PowerSDR.  I can run the software for my SDRs and run heavy CPU using programs like Photoshop or ACAD, and never hear the burps, braps, scratches, stutters, and other non-sense that you would hear with PowerSDR.  Having to dedicate a computer just to run PowerSDR (especially with the multicore fast machines out there) demonstrates how badly PowerSDR and DttSP is written.

Gene
Logged
WD5GWY
Member

Posts: 390




Ignore
« Reply #2 on: December 21, 2012, 07:41:49 PM »

First off, for all you "Big Knob Up Front" guys, I am a computer professional. I work as a database administrator for a major bank. If you're not as comfortable using a computer as a ball point pen, find something else to read. SDR is definitely not for you! After 10 months of tweaking a refurbished Dell laptop, Latitude 6500 dual core, I have a contest ready radio that is rated number 13 on the Sherwood Website. And 3 of the top 13 are Flex Radio. I am primarily a CW/RTTY contester, running an Alpha 86.  Yes Virginia, the Flex 1500 does CW, but only with an external keyer/sidetone. the internal keyer is useless. I use N1MM / FLDIGI running an a separate computer with Winkeyer. The secret is this: PowerSDR needs to be the only thing running in Windows, other wise there are strange noises. The Microsoft Mouse and Keyboard driver causes a blast of white noise. Adobe Flash or Adobe anything will trash the radio. leave the buffers alone, people. Otherwise say goodby to selectivity and image rejection. I was running RTTY on the OK DX contest at 100 / hr when my Alpha 86 blew out a Radio Works T 4 isolater, but that's another story. (See my review in eHam for that). I use a QRP linear to get 50 watts to drive the Alpha. Fully filtered, I have no IM problem on PSK (without the Alpha, of course). After contesting with a Yaesu FT100D, I can't imagine using a "normal" radio again. 
  I have run several different programs while running PowerSDR with my Flex 1500. And I have
yet to notice and strange noises. And for keyboard and mouse, I use a Logitech wireless mouse and keyboard and have never noticed any blasts of white noise. Setting up PowerSDR on my
home built, system, ( Core i5 with 32gigs ram and Win7 64 bit on one hard drive and Vista 32 bit on another) took all of 10 minutes or less. Of course, my primary mode of operation is SSB and I only run the rig as a qrp rig. My main rig(s) for now besides the 1500, is a TenTec Jupiter and a
Yaesu FT-1000MP MKV. Receiver wise, all three rigs run neck and neck for sensitivity using the same antenna. I think the 1500 and the Jupiter are "slightly" quieter than the 1000MP MKV. But, not by much.
  I am only a casual contester and DX'er. So, none of my radios (including some boatanchors) are
really stressed. I enjoy radios with knobs. And also, the SDR radios. I think they all have their uses and are fun to operate.
james
WD5GWY
 
Logged
K5TED
Member

Posts: 696




Ignore
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2012, 01:10:06 PM »

Add a 15" ELO touchscreen as your primary PowerSDR display and you'll never look back.
Logged
K7LZR
Member

Posts: 25




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2012, 12:45:10 AM »

I run PSDR on a dedicated Dell GX520 3ghz single-core desktop under XP pro with no problems whatsoever, and can easily run other programs simultaneously with no ill effects at all. Seems that most of the problems I've seen with PSDR involve less reliable operating systems such as Vista, early Win 7, Windows under some version of Linux, etc. and/or other quirky setups.

I run portable on an old 1.7ghz machine with XP pro with similar results. Works fine. No dropouts anywhere. Don't know why so many people have trouble with this.
Logged
WD5GWY
Member

Posts: 390




Ignore
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2012, 06:26:50 AM »

I must be lucky then! (better go buy a lottery ticket!)
I run PowerSDR on Vista (32bit) and Windows7 (64bit).
And have not had any problems with it. Even while running
other applications.
  I recently installed Windows 8 PRO on another hard drive
and have not installed PowerSDR on it. I don't have a touch screen
and the Win8 interface is not , in my opinion, user friendly without one.
I wish that Microsoft had given a choice for desktop users to setup the
desktop in a traditional way with the Start Menu or the Metro interface.
But, then, I'd have Windows 7 !  Grin
james
WD5GWY
Logged
AB2YC
Member

Posts: 53




Ignore
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2013, 01:58:36 PM »

I also think it is a great radio for the money.

I took nearly a 10 year break from Amateur radio and sold off or gave away nearly all my gear.

I was in the market for a new radio. I was looking at the various offerings and pretty much
headed towards buying a conventional radio, then I built up a SoftRock Ensemble II...

After playing around with the filters I was sold on SDR.

I looked at the various SDR kits but did not find one that offered 160-6 like the FLEX Radios did.
So it came down to the the FLEX-3000 and the FLEX-1500, the Flex 1500 won out
due to Price, USB over Firewire, and the extra antenna and transverter ports.

Logged
WD5GWY
Member

Posts: 390




Ignore
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2013, 04:42:41 PM »

I agree, for what a new or even a used 1500 costs, you get a pretty good
value for your money. I certainly enjoy using mine.
james
WD5GWY
Logged
W4HIJ
Member

Posts: 367




Ignore
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2013, 05:12:57 PM »

I love mine. It does everything I need it to do on HF and I've only had one or two little hiccups along the way when using the two that I've owned. Now I'm just looking for an answer for as inexpensive as possible a satellite station. Still wish someone would do a  stand alone 2m/70cm all mode SDR!! Flex, Elecraft, Ten Tec... cmom who is going to step up to the plate?
Michael, W4HIJ
Logged
AB2YC
Member

Posts: 53




Ignore
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2013, 08:34:22 PM »

I agree, for what a new or even a used 1500 costs, you get a pretty good
value for your money. I certainly enjoy using mine.
james
WD5GWY



I'm not sure what other radio you could buy for $650 that operates
on 160-6 Meters, All Mode, and has that type of filtering.

I was surprised that it even runs well on one of my older computers. So now I my FLEX-1500
on a dedicated Ham radio Only computer that otherwise I would have just given away.



Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!